PARIS - France's finance minister says the new Socialist government will need to find between €7 billion and €10 billion ($8.8 billion to $12.5 billion) for the 2012 budget to meet its deficit-cutting goals.
Pierre Moscovici insisted the shortfall wouldn't be made up by painful spending cuts. "I object to all talk of austerity," he said Monday on i-tele television.
The government will present a new budget July 4 that is expected to include new tax measures. President Francois Hollande has promised to cut the deficit to 4.5 per cent this year.
France is a big contributor to bailouts of weaker European states.
Hollande, who is pushing a Europe-wide stimulus package ahead of an EU summit this week, is meeting with European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi in Paris on Monday.